Had a great lunch talking about follow up with my friend Jeff. Great ideas. As I was walking through the hallway I noticed there was a man sitting alone at the the picnic table outside.
I've been surprised by the number of people that take a smoke break out there. The last time I was about to go out there and initiate a conversation I totally chickened out. Talking with Craig and our conversation ending, I turned the corner in bold, assured faith. By the time I got to the door and saw there were four people at the table my fear turned my shoes to concrete and I walked back to the office licking wounds and assuring myself [in a David Allen way] that "there are too many people to jump in there and invite them to church...better to wait till there are less.." Oh for just as much faith as the Dominoes guy on the street inviting drivers for a large pepperoni.
Today the Lord gave me grace.
I walked over to the man at the table. Noticed that it sounded like he was listening to a small radio enjoying a smoke. It turned out that he was using his cell for a conference call--go figure. I learned this when I went straight in to talking and he said firmly and politely, "can you wait a second?" to finish out his call.
He fit the profile of a guy I'm usually totally intimidated to approach in this way. Not because of the Kool cigarettes but because of his age and apparent season of life. Older. Seasoned. Been around the world.
"Okay..you were saying.."
[Sheepishly] well...I saw you sitting here and I thought I'd invite you to church. Here's an invitation to our church and a booklet on joy."
He took it and started looking at it...
"I am a pastor at the church there. Do you have church you go to? [easy Dallas conversation rescuer]"
"no..not recently." [loved his honesty]
Not sensing any desire from him to go further, "Well we'd love to have you sometime. Enjoy your smoke and this heat."
I turned to go inside and realized I never got his name--nor did I give him mine. Rule one in initiating a relationship is GET THE NAME. Rule number two: REMEMBER THE NAME.
Lord, use the power of Your word to draw him to you...